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Thread: Crack in steps

  1. Back To Top    #1

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    Crack in steps

    I have a crack in my fibreglass(?) steps and I'm wondering if anyone has any thoughts/ideas on how to fix them.
    I'm not sure the picture will be clear enough to see but it's about a 5 inch crack on the first step.
    Thanks in advance
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Deena
    http://www.lindbrookstargazer.ca
    100,000 liter IG vinyl liner
    Rolachem Chlorine & Muratic acid Auto feeders/Pool Perfect Auto feeder
    Pentair 30" filter (Tagelus) Sand filter/Centruion switchless pump 1.5/.25 HP

  2. Back To Top    #2

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Deena, what I've done in the past for similar cracks is to use 2 part epoxy- putty to patch the crack. This is only a bandaid and will only prevent leaks for a while (the epoxy tends to wear away ~fairly quickly, say within a year or sooner

    I've heard of companies out there that come and resurface the steps, but I have know idea who they are or how to find them (if anyone knows about them, now would be a really good time to mention it )

    There is also the issue of 'what caused the crack to begin with?' - on this it's my opinion that the stairs were not correctly/ fully supported or backfilled when the pool was installed

    Sorry this isn't a very informative answer, but until someone chimes in with who the stair resurfacers are and how to contact them, the putty will prevent water loss for now.
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

  3. Back To Top    #3

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Quote Originally Posted by waste
    Deena, what I've done in the past for similar cracks is to use 2 part epoxy- putty to patch the crack. This is only a bandaid and will only prevent leaks for a while (the epoxy tends to wear away ~fairly quickly, say within a year or sooner

    I've heard of companies out there that come and resurface the steps, but I have know idea who they are or how to find them (if anyone knows about them, now would be a really good time to mention it )

    There is also the issue of 'what caused the crack to begin with?' - on this it's my opinion that the stairs were not correctly/ fully supported or backfilled when the pool was installed

    Sorry this isn't a very informative answer, but until someone chimes in with who the stair resurfacers are and how to contact them, the putty will prevent water loss for now.
    I have a crack in my steps that looks almost identical to this. Looking at the picture I might think they are my steps!

    Does anyone know how much water can leak through a crack that size? I'm just wondering if it's a serious problem that needs to be addressed asap or if it can wait until a more convinient time to do maintenance.

    Sean
    17x35 Inground Vinyl Liner
    26,000 Gallons
    Nautilus DE Filter
    Pacfab Challenger Pump

  4. Back To Top    #4

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    Re: Crack in steps

    How old is your pool Sean?
    Our pool is about 10 years old so of course the pool company says it's not their issue. We are trying a two part epoxy tonight.
    I'll let you know how it works out.
    Deena
    http://www.lindbrookstargazer.ca
    100,000 liter IG vinyl liner
    Rolachem Chlorine & Muratic acid Auto feeders/Pool Perfect Auto feeder
    Pentair 30" filter (Tagelus) Sand filter/Centruion switchless pump 1.5/.25 HP

  5. Back To Top    #5

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Quote Originally Posted by deenamccauley
    How old is your pool Sean?
    Our pool is about 10 years old so of course the pool company says it's not their issue. We are trying a two part epoxy tonight.
    I'll let you know how it works out.
    Deena - Our pool is 25 years old. I'm not sure when the last time the liner was replaced, but I'm thinking about doing it next spring so I can replace my broken skimmer. I guess that's the time to see what's behind the steps.

    BTW - Ours is a Foxxx Pool. The step pattern looks identical to yours. The steps are Foxxx as well.

    Sean
    17x35 Inground Vinyl Liner
    26,000 Gallons
    Nautilus DE Filter
    Pacfab Challenger Pump

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Sean
    Ours is a Foxx pool as well. We redid the liner last fall. Our pool gets a lot of use because we are also a campground.
    Well we went to open the epoxy last night to repair the steps and one part was hard as a rock so, so much for that.
    Now I have to find some more that we can use under water, it's either that or we drain it down a few inches which just really isn't an option for us in the middle of the season like this.
    The stuff we were going to use is called Raycrete and apparently you can't find it in Canada right now, not sure why. I have an e-mail into their main office.
    I'm also going to check out our local pool stores to see if they have anything.
    Let me know if you fix yours and how it turns out
    Deena
    http://www.lindbrookstargazer.ca
    100,000 liter IG vinyl liner
    Rolachem Chlorine & Muratic acid Auto feeders/Pool Perfect Auto feeder
    Pentair 30" filter (Tagelus) Sand filter/Centruion switchless pump 1.5/.25 HP

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Deena,

    That's a bummer about the epoxy. I was thinking dropping the water level below the first step since it would only take 1-2 weeks with the dry weather we have been having. The problem is my vacuum port would be below the water level at that point. Since my skimmer is broken and plugged I don't like to run it with only the main drain. I just need to do some plumbing and get the vacuum port down about 2 or 3 inches. It shouldn't be a big deal to do.

    I'll let you know what I end up doing eventually....

    Sean
    17x35 Inground Vinyl Liner
    26,000 Gallons
    Nautilus DE Filter
    Pacfab Challenger Pump

  8. Back To Top    #8
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    Re: Crack in steps

    http://www.poolstepspecialists.com/

    Not sure, but there are many sites like this out there, our local PB uses this technique and is pleased as punch with the results.


    Rik

  9. Back To Top    #9

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    Re: Crack in steps

    We found another 2 part epoxy that could be used under water. This stuff is called "Wet Bond" with TekFlex. Whatever that is?
    www.mrstickys.com is their website.
    So far so good. It mixed up easily and hardened well by the next day.
    Now we'll see how well it lasts.
    Deena
    http://www.lindbrookstargazer.ca
    100,000 liter IG vinyl liner
    Rolachem Chlorine & Muratic acid Auto feeders/Pool Perfect Auto feeder
    Pentair 30" filter (Tagelus) Sand filter/Centruion switchless pump 1.5/.25 HP

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Re: Crack in steps

    Funny.. I also thought those were my steps.. luckily, I do not seem to be losing any noticeable amount of water.
    2003 Coleman MAAX Collection Model 706 - 400gal

  11. Back To Top    #11

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    Re: Crack in steps

    I had the same issue .. and the previous owner had applied many coats of epoxy putty to fix it, apparently always temporarily. Most steps will flex a bit, and the flexing may eventually cause another leak. The leak washed away the supporting sand/soil, causing more flex etc.

    So I decided to fix it for good: I drained the water below the step, sanded off the epoxy mountain, fitted a 3/8" thick sheet of schedule 40 PVC that covered the whole step, and used high quality underwater epoxy to glue the thing down.

    McMasterCarr www.mcmaster.com had the schedule 40 PVC sheets in dark grey that nicely matched the steps. You can cut it with usual woodworking tools if you are careful. I used a router with a roundover bit to ease the edges.

    The surface will be a bit more slippery so you want to do something to roughen it up - route shallow grooves with a core box bit etc.

    I ended up spending less than $150 instead of thousands to replace the steps.

    Good luck !

    Patrick
    Completed July 2008: 25,000 gal IG gunite, 3M "Smoke" Quartz, 6' sheer descent w/ fiberoptic light bar, 2 Hayward ColorLogic LED lights, IntelliFlo VF (running at 160 watts to filter - yeah !), Jandy PDA PS8, Jandy Aquapure 1400 SWCG (running at 15% :o) ), 8 "Jet Flow" returns, 450 sq ft Hayward cartridge filter, 480 sq ft HelioCol solar panels, Hayward VacAlert, Hayward Phantom Turbo, BBB method, TF-100 Test kit (of course !)

  12. Back To Top    #12

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Quote Originally Posted by pauster
    I had the same issue .. and the previous owner had applied many coats of epoxy putty to fix it, apparently always temporarily. Most steps will flex a bit, and the flexing may eventually cause another leak. The leak washed away the supporting sand/soil, causing more flex etc.

    So I decided to fix it for good: I drained the water below the step, sanded off the epoxy mountain, fitted a 3/8" thick sheet of schedule 40 PVC that covered the whole step, and used high quality underwater epoxy to glue the thing down.

    McMasterCarr http://www.mcmaster.com had the schedule 40 PVC sheets in dark grey that nicely matched the steps. You can cut it with usual woodworking tools if you are careful. I used a router with a roundover bit to ease the edges.

    The surface will be a bit more slippery so you want to do something to roughen it up - route shallow grooves with a core box bit etc.

    I ended up spending less than $150 instead of thousands to replace the steps.

    Good luck !

    Patrick
    Post a picture when you get a chance
    Dave
    -------
    Our pool-
    20x40 Free Form Gunite (3'-8'), 26,000 G, AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generator SC-48, Aqua blue pebble sheen, Textured Sundek, Pentair Easy touch with remote control, 1hp Sta-Rite Max-E-Pro pump, Max-E- Therm heater 333k BTU, System 3 Mod Media Cartridge filter, and Polaris 380 cleaner with booster pump

  13. Back To Top    #13

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Yes Patrick, please post a picture because the repair job we did with the epoxy lasted all of a week.
    Our pool gets a lot of use so we need something more substantional I think.
    I think we have the same problem, that there just is nothing behind the stair to hold it so your idea sounds like the way we need to go.
    Thanks
    Deena
    http://www.lindbrookstargazer.ca
    100,000 liter IG vinyl liner
    Rolachem Chlorine & Muratic acid Auto feeders/Pool Perfect Auto feeder
    Pentair 30" filter (Tagelus) Sand filter/Centruion switchless pump 1.5/.25 HP

  14. Back To Top    #14

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    Re: Crack in steps

    I'm afraid that will be difficult to do - we sold the house a year ago. Sorry !

    Just imagine a sheet of grey PVC, of trapezoid shape wit rounded corner (the exact shape and size of the original step), stuck to the step with a good amount (2 lbs in my case) of epoxy ... that's all there is to it. We just completed our new pool build but that's another story.

    Patrick
    Completed July 2008: 25,000 gal IG gunite, 3M "Smoke" Quartz, 6' sheer descent w/ fiberoptic light bar, 2 Hayward ColorLogic LED lights, IntelliFlo VF (running at 160 watts to filter - yeah !), Jandy PDA PS8, Jandy Aquapure 1400 SWCG (running at 15% :o) ), 8 "Jet Flow" returns, 450 sq ft Hayward cartridge filter, 480 sq ft HelioCol solar panels, Hayward VacAlert, Hayward Phantom Turbo, BBB method, TF-100 Test kit (of course !)

  15. Back To Top    #15

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Hmmm....I think my last post ended up in cyber space some where cause I don't see it here.
    Anyway....my brother in law had another suggestion.
    He thought possibly if you drilled a small hole and sprayed in that insulation foam. The stuff that hardens that that would give some stability behind the steps.
    I know you would have to be careful not to get carried away because that stuff expands quite a lot but it might work.
    What do you think?
    Deena
    http://www.lindbrookstargazer.ca
    100,000 liter IG vinyl liner
    Rolachem Chlorine & Muratic acid Auto feeders/Pool Perfect Auto feeder
    Pentair 30" filter (Tagelus) Sand filter/Centruion switchless pump 1.5/.25 HP

  16. Back To Top    #16

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Cool idea - the "Great Stuff" and similar probably don't cure hard enough (they are supposed to remain flexible) - but I am sure there are high-density foams that would work great.
    Completed July 2008: 25,000 gal IG gunite, 3M "Smoke" Quartz, 6' sheer descent w/ fiberoptic light bar, 2 Hayward ColorLogic LED lights, IntelliFlo VF (running at 160 watts to filter - yeah !), Jandy PDA PS8, Jandy Aquapure 1400 SWCG (running at 15% :o) ), 8 "Jet Flow" returns, 450 sq ft Hayward cartridge filter, 480 sq ft HelioCol solar panels, Hayward VacAlert, Hayward Phantom Turbo, BBB method, TF-100 Test kit (of course !)

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Since the steps are fiberglass, couldn't you use a fiberglass repair kit? Like you would for a shower or tub?

  18. Back To Top    #18

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    Re: Crack in steps

    We do plan on using a fibreglass repair kit once we drop the level of the pool at the end of the season.
    Because we are a business we just can't drop the level until the end so we were trying an underwater solution.
    It just did not hold up at all.
    Deena
    http://www.lindbrookstargazer.ca
    100,000 liter IG vinyl liner
    Rolachem Chlorine & Muratic acid Auto feeders/Pool Perfect Auto feeder
    Pentair 30" filter (Tagelus) Sand filter/Centruion switchless pump 1.5/.25 HP

  19. Back To Top    #19

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    South Jersey
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    Re: Crack in steps

    I finally decided that I had put enough water back in the pool! I let it get below the top step and applied two layers of fiberglass to it today. Hopefully this will get me through the next month and a half or so and I can worry about new steps in the spring.

    Sean
    17x35 Inground Vinyl Liner
    26,000 Gallons
    Nautilus DE Filter
    Pacfab Challenger Pump

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Re: Crack in steps

    Let me know how it works Sean. We have a couple more weeks before we can drop the water level and fix ours.
    The fix we did under water has not held up at all.
    Deena
    Deena
    http://www.lindbrookstargazer.ca
    100,000 liter IG vinyl liner
    Rolachem Chlorine & Muratic acid Auto feeders/Pool Perfect Auto feeder
    Pentair 30" filter (Tagelus) Sand filter/Centruion switchless pump 1.5/.25 HP

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